Many people assume that their bodies fix their level of flexibility from birth. But that’s not the case. It turns out that pretty much anyone can move with the flexibility of a ballerina – they just need the right training.
Try touching your toes or doing the splits right now. Impossible, right? That’s not because you lack the ability. It’s just a matter of practice. It takes time to build suppleness, just like it takes a while to build strength and get healthy. Remember, though, that your body already has the potential. It’s just a matter of bringing it out.
In this post, we take a look at some tips to help you become more flexible.
Flexibility Begins In Your Mind, Not The Body
Many people have the idea that flexibility is the result of doing lots of stretches. But the concept actually begins in the mind. Being flexible is a kind of meditative state. You’re not trying to push your body into being flexible. Instead, you’re trying to think your way there.
The trick here is to stay calm and avoid using force while stretching. If your body detects too much strain, it will cease up in an effort to protect you, actually making you less flexible.
It doesn’t matter if you can’t touch your toes. Practice mental exercises, seeing yourself like putty. You can move and it can feel good
Try Moving Around Gently Instead Of Going For Deep Stretches
Going for the deepest stretch you can risk actually tearing your ligaments and muscles, causing them to tend up and shorten. A better approach, according to experts, is to simply move around gentle, allowing your body to go through the natural range of motion.
Start by leaning into lunges to open up the hips. Put one leg forward and then move into it, bending the knee. Allow your body to move naturally. It won’t make a mistake. Then push yourself back up and repeat the exercise with the other leg and keep alternating.
A bit like a chiropractor, you’re trying to work with your body, not against it. Don’t force, just flow. If it feels extreme, try a different approach.
Experience Your Body And Forget About Goals
Having a goal that you’re going to do the splits or touch your toes might sound like a good idea. After all, all activity should be purposeful, right?
Well, not so fast. It turns out that purpose is actually a poor motivator for the average person. People don’t do yoga to be flexible: they do it to be at peace with their bodies. They do it for a sense of fun and enjoyment.
When performing exercises, just be at one with your body. Ignore the outside world. And let go of the need to compete or perform. Just do you, and your body will thank you for it.
Move Instead Of Posing
How you look doesn’t matter. All that counts is that you’re moving. Over time, your body and muscle memory will naturally perfect your form. You don’t need to force it. And you don’t need to worry about how you’ll appear to other people.